By Matt Taylor
From her beginnings in a prestigious arts school and learning to play numerous instruments at a young age to winning domestic singing competitions, Malaysian singer-songwriter Shio Quek 郭修彧 has enjoyed a life-long love affair with music. It wasn’t until she moved to Taiwan to dedicate herself to a career in the industry however did she truly begin to make a name for herself outside of her home country. She wowed on her debut album, 2016’s Abstract Painting抽象圖, a mixture of ballads and exciting synth-heavy mid-tempos.
Sophomore album Blind Spot盲點 sees Shio take a decidedly hands-on approach in its manifestation. Involving herself in the composition and production, as well as being the album's primary songwriter, Shio wanted to explore the concept of handling what we perceive to be our imperfections. This self-doubt means that we unnecessarily focus on the negative aspects of life and worry about how people see us, making us unable to appreciate the beauty in our lives.
Overseen by singer-songwriter and mentor Penny Tai戴佩妮, the driven veteran's aim was to push Shio to strive for a greater degree of authenticity. For Shio, this meant not only being her authentic self lyrically, but also trying to capture the sentiment of the songs through their composition. Aiming for a live-band sound, whilst making the album Shio would often lead musical brainstorming sessions, trying a variety of sounds and instruments to tests the limits of each song and what sound may best suit them.